Marrakech Climate Change Conference
The Marrakech meeting was the 22nd Session of the Conference of the Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), known as COP 22. It also served as the first meeting of the governing body of the Paris Agreement, known by the acronym CMA.
The conference incorporated the twenty-second Conference of the Parties (COP22), the twelfth meeting of the parties for the Kyoto Protocol (CMP12), and the first meeting of the parties for the Paris Agreement (CMA1). The purpose of the conference was to discuss and implement plans about combating climate change and to “[demonstrate] to the world that the implementation of the Paris Agreement is underway”. Participants work together to come up with global solutions to climate change.
Salient outcomes are:
• International Solar Alliance: India went to Marrakesh with a draft Framework Agreement on International Solar Alliance, which 26 countries signed. The Agreement will take the shape of an international treaty once 15 countries that have signed up, ratify it.
• Adaptation of African Agriculture (AAA): The triple-An initiative seeks to climate-proof agriculture in Africa by promoting sustainable soil management, better water management, and risk mitigation strategies. 27 African countries are already on the platform.
• Mission Innovation: There will be greater research collaborations between these countries, which together account for almost 80% of all investments into clean energy research. The mission has identified 7 innovation challenges, including smart grids, carbon capture and sequestration, building of storage cells for solar energy, clean energy materials and sustainable biofuels. Science Based Targets initiative got a boost in Marrakech when over 200 companies worldwide committed to emissions reductions targets.
• Climate Vulnerable Forum: Member countries stressed that the target should be to keep global temperature rise to within 1.5 (not 2) degrees Celsius from pre-industrial times. They vowed to update their climate action plans before 2020 to bring in greater ambition, and prepare a long-term low-carbon development strategy for 2050 with a 1.5-degree target in mind. They also said they would strive to reach 100% renewable energy production between 2030 and 2050.
• Sub-national jurisdictions target: 165 sub-national jurisdictions, calling themselves the Under2s, announced that they would reduce their emissions by 80-95 per cent below 1990 levels and limit their per capita emissions to under 2 tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2050. These governments range across states like California, New York and Telangana and cities like Manchester and Sao Paulo, and contribute to over a third of the global economy.
• 2050 Pathway Platform: This is an effort to get countries, cities and businesses to accept long-term targets for climate action. Countries have submitted 5-year or 10-year action plans as part of their commitments under the Paris deal.
• Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage, the framework for a five-year rolling work plan was approved. It will serve as the basis for developing corresponding activities, starting with the first meeting in 2017. Since adaptation has limitations, this is a global mechanism to provide support to countries that sustain ongoing and future harm from climate change. The aim will be to address issues such as extreme events, non-economic losses, displacement, migration, slow-moving climatic changes and risk management.
Nearly 200 nations attending the COP22 to the UNFCC have adopted Marrakech Action Proclamation for Our Climate and Sustainable Development.
One focus in Marrakech was to clarify all the rules related to NDCs so that each country could be confident that others were being transparent about their actions.
India has welcomed Marrakesh Action Proclamation as most of its demands including the issue of providing finance to developing nations to tackle climate change has been incorporated.
Future meetings: Negotiations will resume at the annual Subsidiary Bodies meeting, set for May 8-18, 2017, in Bonn, Germany.
Fiji will assume the COP presidency at COP 23, to be held November 6-17, 2017, in Bonn.
Poland will host COP 24, set for November 5-16, 2018.